MARC Format for Holdings Record (MFHD)

General Information

Creating Templates

Creating and Editing MFHD Records

Saving MFHD Records

Multiple Call Numbers for a Single Collection

Deleting a MFHD Record

General Information

  • For in-process materials, generally do not suppress MFHD records, as an unsuppressed bibliographic record with no MFHDs, or no unsuppressed MFHDs, will generate an error message in the OPAC.  Optionally, suppress new bibliographic and MFHD records during editing and review.  Keep track of suppressed records and ensure that both the bibliographic record and all attached MFHDs are unsuppressed when editing is complete.
  • For closed collections with an existing unsuppressed bibliographic record, update or create a MFHD as a placeholder for restricted access.  Before queuing for transfer to LSF or Brbl, finalize the MFHD or MFHDs and item records. 
  • Before saving an unsuppressed bibliographic record, make sure at least one attached MFHD is unsuppressed.  This MFHD must have at least a location code (852 ‡b) and a call number (852 ‡h and ‡i). If a final call number has not been assigned, temporarily enter “Manuscript Unit” in 852 ‡h instead, and omit 852 ‡i.

Creating Templates

See local guidelines for creating templates.

Creating and Editing MFHD Records

Location (852)

            Subfield ‡b

            Subfields ‡h and ‡i

            Subfield ‡x

            Subfield ‡z

Holdings (866)

Location (852)


Subfield ‡b

  • Enter a code from the list below.  This code will be automatically supplied in the Perm Loc field of any subsequently-created item record.
  • Containers to be shelved at LSF: use a TS (Technical Services) location code.  These codes will be automatically changed to LSF codes after accessioning at LSF.
  • Containers to be shelved at BRBL: use a BRBL location code.   
  • Containers added to collection shelved at LSF: maintain existing MFHD 852 ‡b lsf code 

Location codes defined for BRBL holdings:

BRBL LSF TS Curatorial Area
beingen lsfbeir beints GEN
beinosb lsfbeior beintso OSB
beinwa lsfbeiwr beintsw WA
beinycal lsfbeiar beintsa YCAL (including JWJ)
beinycgl lsfbeigr beintsg YCGL

OPAC Holdings/Location display:

MFHD 852 $b and Item Perm Loc OPAC display
BRBL codes BEINECKE (Non-Circulating)
TS codes BEINECKE (Non-Circulating) Technical Services in process

If an item record exists, holding library in Detailed Holdings/Location is supplied by the item record Perm Loc field. To avoid incorrect OPAC display, the item record Perm Loc field must be the same as MFHD 852 ‡b.

Subfields ‡h and ‡i

For more information and a list of current and discontinued Manuscript Unit call number sequences, see the Call Number Assignment Guidelines on the Manuscript Unit Sharepoint.

Records with pending editing or review:

  • If a call number has not been assigned, temporarily enter “Manuscript Unit” in 852 ‡h and omit 852 ‡i.


852 80 ‡b beints ‡h Manuscript Unit

Cutter numbers:

  • For Western Americana shelved in vertical files.
  • Enter the Cutter number in ‡i as the last element in the unique number, separated by a space but no punctuation.
  • For instructions in determining Cutter numbers, see the Cuttering for Western Americana Manuscripts supplement.


852 80 ‡b beinwa ‡h WA MSS ‡i S-1592 C548 

Non-standard locations:

If all the material represented by a call number is shelved in a non-standard location, enter one of the following terms in parentheses at the end of ‡i (spell out terms as shown):

  • (Art)
  • (Broadside)
  • (Broadside oversize)
  • (Cold storage)
  • (Oversize)
  • (Record album storage)*
  • (Roll)


852 80 ‡b beinycal ‡h YCAL MSS FILE ‡i 132 (Broadside)

Dimension guidelines for non-standard locations:

Broadside: Fits 32” x 40” or 36” x 48” folders

Broadside oversize: Requires folders larger than standard broadsides

Oversize: Housed in flat or custom boxes larger than 14” x 18” - 14 x 18” is the largest size that we can shelve on standard shelves. Any collection where the entirety of the collection is stored in a box larger than 14 x 18” should have (Oversize) added to the end of the call number.

*Note on cold storage:

Until BRBL restores a cold storage room, send all film to LSF and do not use the designation (Cold Storage) in the call number and enum.

Film in poor condition that will necessitate cold storage once available should be given the statistical categories ColdStorageBrbl and RestrictedFragileSpecColl   – but no (Cold storage) designation in the call number or enum.

Film that can be housed at LSF for the long term (in cool, not cold, conditions) should just be given a RestrictedFragileSpecColl stat cat.

To determine whether an item should be identified as a candidate for future cold storage, check with the head of PCMU, considering cold storage availability will be limited.

Analytic records:

Enter the call number in 852 and a public note in 856 in the following format:

  • 852 80 ‡b beinwa ‡h [Call number sequence] ‡i [unique identifier] Box [number] Folder [number]
  • 856 42 ‡u[bib id of collection-level record] ‡z To expedite request for use in Beinecke Reading Room, click here and request Box [#] from Series [#] of the [Collection Name]
  • Also enter a 580.
  • A similar procedure is used by the Rare Book Team for printed items that remain in manuscript collections.

For further guidance on analytic and boundwith records, see the analytics and boundwiths documentation on the Manuscript Unit Sharepoint.

Subfield ‡x

For most notes, use standard wording: [Note]; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].


852 80 ‡b beingen ‡h GEN MSS ‡i 300 ‡x Baseline processing completed; bein, ms 2011 May.

Required for the following, with wording as shown:

Change of 245 when updating a recon record

            ‡x Before recon title was [Title]; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].

Baseline processing

‡x Baseline processing completed; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].

Baseline processing, with description reconned from card catalog:

            ‡x Baseline processing completed; description reconned from card catalog; bein, ms

            [yyyy] [Month].

Full processing, when updating a preliminary or baseline record

‡x Processing completed and Orbis record updated; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].

Expired donor-imposed restriction (also delete 506)

            ‡x Previously restricted until [yyyy]; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].

            ‡x [Specific material] previously restricted until [yyyy]; bein, ms [yyyy] [Month].

Subfield ‡z

Required for noting former call numbers in backlog or recon cataloging.

  • Standard wording: Former call number[s]: [Call number], [Call number]
  • No period at end of field.
  • Also list former call numbers in Bib 099, so that they will be searchable as keyword.


‡z Former call number: ZA Wilson

‡z Former call numbers: ZA Wilson, Uncat ZA Wilson, Za W6933 +1

Required for bound-withs.

  • Standard wording: Bound with [#] other titles. To view other titles search by call number: [call number]
  • No period at end.
  • Also enter 500 note.

To link guest record to host record:

  • Open host record.
  • Select Record>Link to Bibliographic Record
  • Enter bib id of guest record.

For further guidance on analytic and boundwith records, see documentation on Manuscript Unit Sharepoint.

Holdings (866)

Required for collections split between BRBL and LSF, to list containers shelved at the location specified in 852 ‡b.

  • Standard indicators, subfields, and wording: 866 41 ‡8 0 ‡a [list containers]
  • For containers, use same standard terms as in Item record Enum fields.
  • Total containers listed must match attached item records.


866 41 ‡8 0 ‡a Boxes 198-203, 217-272, 310-316, Boxes 321-330 (Oversize), 331-332 (Broadside)

Optionally, enter multiple 866s to list sequences of volumes, in order to indicate volumes not held.

Example: (from George Ives clippings albums, GEN MSS 426)

866 41 ‡8 0 ‡a v.1,

866 41 ‡8 0 ‡a v.3-v.7,

866 41 ‡8 0 ‡a v.9-v.45

Saving MFHD Records

No additional local guidelines.

Multiple Call Numbers for a Single Collection

Required for collections with two or more call numbers, such as unprocessed or partially processed collections acquired through multiple accessions.

Generally, a collection is reclassed under one call number when baseline or full processing is completed.

Deleting a MFHD Record

Cataloging module passwords held by Manuscript Unit archivists, Archives and Catalog Assistants, and some students allow deletion of MFHDs.

To delete a MFHD:

  • The MFHD must be active. A record is active when it is the only record visible and/or its title bar is highlighted in blue.
  • Choose Record>Delete.